Amazing, but true: Getting enough magnesium could actually save your life. The Harvard Nurses’ Health Study once reported that women with the highest levels of magnesium in their blood plasma had a 77 percent lower risk for sudden cardiac death or fatal heart arrhythmias, compared to women with the lowest levels, even with other cardiac risk factors were taken into account.
Every organ in the human body–especially your heart, muscles, and kidneys–needs magnesium, which plays a key role in more than 300 physiological functions. Yet 80 percent of Americans are deficient, in part because the soil used for modern farming is often depleted of the minerals we need for optimal health.
Another reason for deficiency is eating magnesium-depleting foods, such as soft drinks and nearly all processed foods. Compounding the problem is the dramatic increase in use of medications that strip magnesium from the body, including birth control pills, estrogen replacement therapy, blood pressure and cholesterol-lowering drugs, and diuretics (water pills).
In my books, The Brain Warrior’s Way and The Omni Diet, I recommend taking a daily supplement. The typical adult dose is 400 to 1,000 mg daily, divided into three doses. Good dietary sources include nuts (especially almonds and Brazil nuts), seeds (including flax seed, sesame and sunflower), leafy green vegetables, and seaweed. And here’s delicious news: dark chocolate and cacao are also great ways to get a mineral boost!
Some healthcare providers consider magnesium their secret weapon against illness, because taking it in adequate amounts can improve or even prevent a wide range of ailments. Warning signs that you might be deficient include muscle cramps or twitches, heart palpitations or rapid heartbeat, insomnia, poor memory, chronic fatigue, anxiety, and mental fog.
Among the health benefits of getting enough magnesium are these:
For information about a magnesium chewable, now available from Amen Clinics’ sister company – BrainMD Health, click here.
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